Every Wednesday, during school term time, lunch and fellowship are available for the older members of our community.
The ladies and gentleman are collected in the minibus or by volunteers.
Following grace, they are served soup, main meal, sweet accompanied by juice and low-alcohol wine. Also available are coffee or tea and sweets.
A raffle and sale of shop items provide funds towards the minibus costs.
A short service of hymns and prayers follows, and then everyone is taken home.
HERE ARE SOME COMMENTS FROM THE “BIDS” THEMSELVES:-
· “Meals are delicious”
· “Lovely people”
· “Bright spot of the week”
· “Couldn’t have better staff”
· “Look forward to coming”
· “Everyone so helpful, nothing too much trouble”
· “Meeting friends and making new friends too”
· “Tables are set better than some hotels”
· “Saves me cooking”
· “I can’t wait to come”
· “Food is excellent”
· “Great, I love it”
· “A friendly couple of hours well spent”
· “A pleasure to come”
· “No complaints”
· “Everyone is so kind”
There are lots of volunteers who help preparing the meals, laying tables, shopping, cooking, serving, and most importantly the washing up!!
HERE ARE SOME OF THEIR COMMENTS:-
· “Hard work but rewarding”
· “We try to meet everyone’s needs”
· “Very good time of fellowship for the staff”
· “Special occasions are wonderful with cakes for the milestone Birthdays”
· “My mom came for years, now I come to help to show my appreciation for all the kindness given”.
Behind the Scenes at Cornerstone
Cornerstone - the luncheon club outreach for the over-60s, has certainly increased in size since its conception some 15 or so years ago. From it’s early provision of a simple bowl of soup, cob and hot pudding to less than a dozen Bethel Bids, it now serves a four course meal (plus low alcohol wine and juice) cooked and served up by our hard working volunteers.
As there is now a potential of 56 “customers”, seven tables of eight place settings have to be set up. That’s 56 side plates, 56 sets of cutlery, 56 soup bowls, 56 dinner plates and subsequently, 56 dessert dishes and 112 wine/juice glasses! No wonder our poor washers-up think things are coming around twice…..in the case of the soup/dessert bowls, they are!! There’s also the tea/coffee cups and saucers, teaspoons, milk jugs, sugar bowls, mint dishes, breadbaskets etc. etc. etc!!!
Work starts early in the kitchen - once the obligatory food and hygiene hats, aprons and gloves are donned. Oh how we hate those hats!! Having potatoes peeled the day before by our lovely volunteer “peelers” (often called “scrubbers”!) is a HUGE help. We can get the spuds cooking early on, before tackling the rest of the meal preparation and cooking. We try to bring as much variety as possible to the meals, bearing in mind the difficulty of catering to everyone’s tastes, also remembering that we have vegetarian and diabetic ladies to think about.
We also try to vary the order in which we serve, so that one table is not always first or last to be served. Despite the stresses, there is still plenty of hilarity in the kitchen, and all our volunteers do a marvellous job. You know who you are—God bless you all!!
During the Summer, whilst the regular staff are soaking their tired feet and moisturising dishwater-damaged hands, getting themselves recharged for looking after our lovely Bids again at the September re-start, our Bids enjoy a Jacqui Davies and Joyce Barratt “Buffet Special”. Occasionally when church cannot accommodate Cornerstone, usually because of the Fayres, the bids are taken for a pub lunch, so the socialising continues.
To all who work so hard and selflessly serving our Bids in any way……… a huge thank you and God bless you.